sump pump

My sump pump failed…now what?

My sump pump failed…now what?
Posted by Matt Buchanan

If you live in certain areas of the country where homes typically have basements, it’s smart to have a sump pump (or 2) in the lower spots in the basement. Most homeowners understand the benefits of having such a system in their basement, and that’s definitely the case when they’ve invested a lot of money refinishing their basement to turn it into a livable space their family can enjoy. If you’re going to spend that much money on your home, it’s only smart to protect that investment by installing a relatively inexpensive (at least as it compares to the cost of a typical basement finishing project) water mitigation system. But like any mechanical system in your home, it’s not fail-proof. In fact, all too often when they’re expected to perform to protect your home they fail and the consequences can be disastrous.

What do I do if my sump pump fails?

In most cases sump pumps fail during rain events. When that happens, the water usually seeps in through the foundation or basement walls and begins pooling in the lowest area of the basement, gradually rising as more water comes in. So what do you do at that point? Here’s a couple of suggestions we have to help you navigate a difficult situation.

First, you’re going to need to get the sump pump fixed. A plumber is going to be necessary to get the sump pump back up and running. Immediately call a licensed plumber in your area and get on their schedule as quickly as possible. During rain events, it’s not unusual for many homes in the area to suffer the same fate as you, so plumbers will get booked up quickly. Act fast and call for their help!

Second, do the same with a certified water mitigation company.  Many times it doesn’t make sense for a water mitigation company to come out immediately, because you’re paying them to pump out water as more water is coming in. It’s just an endless cycle that can cost you a lot of money without doing much in the way of saving your home. You may decide that’s worth the money to you, but in many cases, it makes more sense to try and manage things temporarily while you wait for a plumber to fix your sump pump. That said, even if the plumber fixes your sump pump you’re still going to need a restoration company to come in and remove any excess moisture and dry out the affected areas.

Third, consider making a quick run-up to your local hardware store to purchase a basement water pump. These pumps can operate continuously during the water event and suck up the water that is pooling and then transport it by hose into a bathtub or other drain. They can work in very little water (the one we linked works in 1/16th inch of water) and if the water stops it automatically shuts off so it doesn’t burn up. You can get a good water pump for under $100 which is much cheaper than the hourly rate we’d have to charge you to remove water even while it’s still coming into your basement.

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About Matt Buchanan


I grew up in Irving, TX, and left for Nashville, TN for college. After college, I lived in Washington, DC, and then in Cairo, Egypt. After coming back to the states, I spent a couple of years back in Dallas before moving with my wife to Denver! This entry was posted in Basement Flood. Bookmark the permalink.

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